A Japanese comedy zombie film was accidentally released on Amazon Prime Video early in the New Year.
One Cut of the Dead has been a cult smash in Japan. Its distributor, Third Window Films, called the version available to stream on Amazon an “unauthorised bootleg” that should never have been streamable. The film has since disappeared from the service.
Third Window isn’t even sure how the film became available on Amazon. In a statement to Gizmodo, it called the whole situation “pretty insane”. It added that it was “not sure how in this day and age films can be illegally uploaded to such major sites as Amazon which are supposed to be very strict about what they take on.”
One possibility is that it made its way onto the service via Amazon Prime Video Direct, which lets film distributors upload their content directly to Amazon, much like Kindle Direct Publishing does for authors. Prime Video Direct doesn’t check if the uploader is the copyright holder, so theoretically could let anyone upload anything they want.
Amazon hasn’t commented yet on how the film became available.